The Presidential Pot-Pie
Title: The Presidential Pot-Pie
Description: This Budget of Fun cartoon manifests fear of potential Catholic influence in the United States, an overwhelmingly Protestant nation in the nineteenth century. The widespread concern arose with an increase in immigration from the Catholic countries of Ireland and Germany in the 1840s and 1850s. Politicians and newspaper editors began to call for restricting immigration and refusing Catholic requests for equal treatment in educational funding. The anti-immigrant, anti-Catholic movement culminated in the founding of the American Party (commonly called “Know-Nothing”), which peaked in the mid-1850s. Its membership then declined so that by 1860 many had joined the Republican Party. Here, Catholic Archbishop John Hughes of New York seeks ingredients from the three major presidential candidates—(left-right) Republican Abraham Lincoln, Northern Democrat Stephen Douglas, and Southern Democrat John Breckinridge—in order to make Catholic influence palatable to the American public.